Solbit Takes a Walk on the Wild Side

*New reader? Get oriented below.

Dear Nicalai,

You know something?  Travel is wonderful!  Oh, I get pooped and grumpy traveling, though not as bad as Papa sometimes.  Still I get to meet new people, make friends with them, and they show me strange and interesting things.

Now that we’re in Tanzania on safari, I’m starting to understand what Papa means when he tells me, “Solbit, the two most liberating things a person — or even a Plastic Jurassic — can do are read books and travel.”  I’m not reading books, yet, but I’ve been traveling and am free to make new friends and to overcome my fears, too.

When we started our walking safari, I was terrified.  We were going where big meat-eating animals roam.  Yeah, roam; they’re not in cages or behind high fences.

Two of my new friends took us on a walk on the wild side near Lake Manyara. They helped me to get over my fear.  Here they are.

We made friends with our safari guide, Chagamba, on left and our Maasai guide.

We made friends with our safari guide, Chagamba, on left and our Maasai guide.

Chagamba guides for Mark Thornton Safaris.  He’s really smart and knows a lot about wildlife, birds, the Big Five, the Little Five, plants, you name it. He knows it. He said he grew up in the Ikoma tribe.  His grandfather taught him to be a tracker. Guess what.  He can read animal tracks in dust and in mud!

Nona said that he’s carrying a rifle to protect us, just in case a lion or elephant attacked us. Our Maasai guide carried a spear, too, Nona said, “…just in case.”  Oh, girl, I started to drag my feet. I don’t want to go into dangerous places. “Jo, looked back at me and called out, ‘Come on, Solbit, look what we found.’”

Walking on the Maasai Steppe, I got to know Johana, another of our Maasai guides (he's holding the spear); I already knew another Joanna (she's looking back at me).

Walking on the Maasai Steppe, I got to know Johana, another of our Maasai guides (he’s holding the spear); I already knew another Joanna (she’s looking back at me).

She’s the most sensible one of our group, so I knew I could trust her.  So, I hurried up to see what they had found.  Look.

This beetle is as big as I am! Poor fella was dead when we found him.

This beetle is as big as I am! Poor fella was dead when we found him.

That thing is almost as big as I am, but Jo explained that it was “… no longer among the living.” So, I went right up to it and touched it.  “Wow!” I said,  “Hard body.”  Papa said, “Right, it’s called an ‘exo-skeleton.’ It doesn’t have bones like dinosaurs and people have bones. Its ‘bones’ are its exoskeleton, literally ‘outside bones.’”

Then Chagamba called me,  “Solbit, here’s another insect that has an exo-skeleton.”  I ran up there to see, and suddenly these things surrounded me.  I could tell that they were still “…among the living.”

I'm surrounded by harvester ants, but they don't care about me.

I’m surrounded by harvester ants, but they don’t care about me.

They were very busy harvesting grass seeds.  That’s why they’re called “harvester ants.” Walking on the wild side, we were finding many different kinds of living things. Who knew wildlife could be so interesting?

Then Papa called to me, “Hey, here’s an animal that doesn’t have bones or exoskeleton, but a ‘house’ on it’s back.  Come look, Solbit.”

This field snail carries her "mobile house" on her back.

This field snail carries her “mobile house” on her back.

I think someone said this was a field snail, but I’m not sure about that.  What I am sure about is that this snail carries that big shell — it’s “house” — everywhere it goes.  If something tries to eat it, it can hide inside that shell.

Maybe we should all be carrying little houses on our backs instead of a rifle and a spear?  I don’t think we’d get very far, though, do you?

Now, Johana, our Maasai elder, found an animal with bones, and it wasn’t another human being and it wasn’t a lion, either.  Nona said, “Johana, how did you catch that mouse?  Wow, you are fast!”

Johana caught a field mouse. (No animals were injured in making this photograph.)

Johana caught a field mouse. (No animals were injured in making this photograph.)

After we all got a good look at Ms. Mouse, Johana let go of it’s tail.  It seemed surprised to be let free.  Kind of looked around.  Then suddenly it disappeared into the tall grass.  We all laughed, knowing how relieved it must be.

Well, I got over my fear of a walking safari today, but then we didn’t run into a lion or an elephant.  Isn’t it odd how I feel?  I don’t want to run into either of them, but I also want to see both up close.

I talked to Papa about that.  He said, “Solbit, you are experiencing a classic ‘Approach-Avoid Conflict.’”  Sometimes Papa says things that sound smart, but I have no idea what he’s talking about.  Do you?

I’m your friend.

Love,

Solbit

June 2014

  • You may be asking yourself, “Who is Solbit?” Solbit is a fictional character, but she is a real plastic dinosaur, sent to us unsolicited in a package we ordered from Photojojo. So, she’s a plastic jurassic. Solbit is short for the four names given her by our grandchildren: Sparkle, Orangie, Lulu, Breakit. We tend to use her given names for when she’s been naughty. Thank you for visiting Tales of a Plastic Jurassic. Solbit likes company and hopes you’ll come back.
  • You can learn more about Solbit at her About page and in the earlier posts, “Solbit: How I Got My Name” and “Solbit: How I Got to Travel.”

Solbit Says, “I Love A Ritzy Lodge, Don’t You?”

*New reader? Get oriented below.

Dear Nicalai,

I love a ritzy hotel, don’t you?  Nona and Papa always travel “on a budget.”  You know what that means. It means we always pass by other travelers in fancy hotels and go to little out-of-the-way (cheap) places.  I look at those fancy hotels, as we pass by, and wonder, “What would it be like to stay there?”  Now, I know, because either someone made a mistake or Nona made an exception.  Look at where we’re staying in Tanzania!

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It’s a very classy lodge.  We’ve gone from cheap to 5 Star.  I love it!  I think Tanzania is going to be THE BEST!  Look, this place even has its own coffee bushes.

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Talk about fresh coffee! Tonight we have supper on a patio with its own outdoor fire place.  We’re leaving now for supper. I’ll pick this up tomorrow.

Well, it’s tomorrow.  This morning we left our fancy lodge to go for a walk— all eight of us (Jo, Ellen, Craig, Jack, Betsy, Nona, Papa, and me) and our two guides (Chagamba and Mika).  We’re going to see a lot of birds and something called the Big Five, whatever that is.  Guess we’ll find out when we get there.

So we’re walking along this dried up, sandy river bed. It’s sunny and hot.  I look down.  What’s that?  I see two eyes in the sand.  “Nona, put me down so I can see what that is, please.”  She asks, “What what is?” Then she looks down and says, “Oooo.  Something is looking at us.”  I ask, “Is it one of the Big Five?”  She says, “No, Solbit, the Big Five are the lion, the leopard, the elephant, the rhino, and African buffalo. Whatever that is, it’s no bigger than my thumbnail.”

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Papa stopped and looked in the hole, “Hey, its a sand toad of some kind.  Good eye, Solbit!” He was right.  We were looking at a little toad.

I said, “Mr. Toad, why are you all covered in sand down in that hole?”  He said, “Miss, that’s not sand, that’s my skin; it looks like sand; I’m camouflaged for protection.  I’m hiding from predators, and, if you’re smart,  you’ll get yourself some camouflage too, or you could be eaten.”

I said, “Really?”  He said, “You better believe it, babe. A lot of hungry birds, hyenas, snakes, you name it, are out to find a meal here.  You gotta blend in or you’ll be some predator’s lunch today or more likely tonight. Many more of them at night.”  I said, “I’m going to be just fine tonight at my fancy lodge, but I’ll be careful today.  Thanks for the warning.”

It was all downhill from there.  My day went from “this is going to be great” to “this is bad” to “how could this be worse?”  After our walk, our Land Rovers didn’t drive back to our fancy lodge.  We drove for hours on the Maasai Steppe and stopped in the middle of nowhere.  That’s when I got the bad news:  tonight we’re camping.  No more fancy lodge. Here’s our tent,

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and it’s not with all the others’ tents.  It’s way out on the edge of the site next to bushes (think Big Five) and a dry riverbed (like where we saw Mr. Toad).

We just had supper.  It’s already getting dark at 6:30.  Our guides have made a big campfire.  I heard someone say, “That’ll keep them away.”  Keep them away?  Who is “them?”

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Remember what Mr Toad said earlier today?  “There’s more of THEM (emphasis added by yours truly) at night.”  I’ve come to the realization that Tanzania may be more dangerous than Australia.  I’m getting out of here tonight.  “Nona, pack our bags! Nona!”  Where is she? She’s off in the bushes with her binoculars … at night!  I just heard her say to Papa, “Solbit’s, calling,  you take care of her now.”

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He sat me down in “our” tent and had a talk with me.  “Solbit, I can tell you’re feeling scared.  What’s frightening you?”  I told him what Mr. Toad said to me and said, “I don’t have any camouflage.  The Big Five will get me.”  He said, “No they won’t. I’ll put you in my pocket, and they won’t be able to see you.”

Huh!  How smart is that?  “Papa, have you considered that you don’t have camouflage?  You know the Big Five are bigger than you.  They could eat you with me in your pocket!”  I just hope we make it through the night to live another day. If you never hear from me again, you’ll know what happened.  I’m in Papa’s pocket now. He’s sitting by the campfire. Someone just asked in a hushed voice, “Shuss, what’s that?” I think I hear something too.

I’m your friend.

Love,

Solbit

June 2014

  • You may be asking yourself, “Who is Solbit?” Solbit is a fictional character, but she is a real plastic dinosaur, sent to us unsolicited in a package we ordered from Photojojo. So, she’s a plastic jurassic. Solbit is short for the four names given her by our grandchildren: Sparkle, Orangie, Lulu, Breakit. We tend to use her given names for when she’s been naughty. Thank you for visiting Tales of a Plastic Jurassic. Solbit likes company and hopes you’ll come back.
  • You can learn more about Solbit at her About page and in the earlier posts, “Solbit: How I Got My Name” and “Solbit: How I Got to Travel.”

Solbit Asks, “Is This a Real Airplane?”

*New reader? Get oriented below.

Dear Nicalai,

“Don’t forget to take your motion sickness pills!” Nona reminded Papa.  We were checking out of Casa del Mar – one of my favorite places on this trip.

I asked Papa, “You never take motion sickness pills for airplane rides, and we’ve had a lot of airplane rides. Why now?”  Papa explained that we’re going to fly from Zanzibar to Arusha on a small plane, and he sometimes gets sick on small planes.  “You mean you throw up?” I asked.  He said, “Yes, Solbit, but it isn’t polite to say ‘throw up.’ Let’s just say that the motion makes me sick.  OK?”

“Yes, OK. Hey, maybe I should take a motion sick pill, too, so I don’t throw up? I mean so I don’t get sick.” I suggested.  Papa replied, “Solbit, the pill is bigger than your head, and I don’t think you could get it down, and, besides, you’re plastic, so you won’t get sick.”  That disappointed me a bit, but not as much as this.

When we walked out to our “airplane” at the airport, I asked, “Where’s our plane, Nona, and she said this is it.” I said, “Is this a real airplane? It doesn’t look like anything that we’ve flown in before.”

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Small, huh? I protested, “It’s a toy! I’m not getting on that thing.  It’s too small.”  Papa said, “Solbit, that’s why you should get on. It’s just the right size for you, and you get to sit with the pilot and watch all the controls, too.”

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That’s when my enthusiasm overcame my fear.  Put me in that copilot seat, and I’m ready to take off! “Let’s go, Papa!”  We hopped on board, and that’s when I heard Nona say a new word, “Well, what a coincidence!”

“Coincidence” is a big word. right?  Have you ever heard it before?  Well, Papa and Nona had one on this teeny weeny airplane.

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As you can see, I shared the copilot’s seat with a woman. Her name is Amy. She and her family were also passengers on our flight from Zanzibar to Arusha.  Guess what. They live in Philadelphia, very near where Nona, Papa, and their kids used to live. It gets more weird.  Amy and Papa worked at the same organization many years ago. That’s not weird enough, though.  Her daughters are going to the school where Nona and Papa’s kids went.  That we would “bump” into them at the Zanzibar airport is a coincidence.

Before we took off, the pilot gave us a safety talk.  Basically, he said, “Put on your seat belts and don’t worry about anything.”  I raised my hand to ask him a question.  He looked at me, and said, “Yes, what’s your question?”  I said, “If we don’t need to worry about anything on this teeny weeny plane, what’s that for?”  I pointed to this.

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He gave me a frown.  Then he smiled and said, “That’s just in case any Plastic Jurassics get motion sick.  I hope you took your pills.”  Everyone giggled, except me.  What!

Well, get this.  He gets in his seat.  The plane is so small that the pilot actually gave a left hand turn signal out his window!  No way!

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That’s when my fear — I mean good judgement— overcame my enthusiasm. I put my foot down, “Get me out of here!”  Nobody heard me.  The roar of the engines drown out my screams. We were in the air.

As we flew away from Zanzibar, Amy and I looked out the window.  Nona took this photo for me to remember the view.

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Pretty, huh?  I told Nona that I didn’t want to leave Zanzibar.  She said, “I know, Solbit, but we’re going to have a walking safari on the Maasai Steppe, and you’ll like that too.”  So, we didn’t go back.  I have no idea what she was talking about though.  Maasai?  Steppe?  Safari?  What’s all that?  I guess I’ll find out, soon.

I’m your friend.

Love,

Solbit

June 2014

  • You may be asking yourself, “Who is Solbit?” Solbit is a fictional character, but she is a real plastic dinosaur, sent to us unsolicited in a package we ordered from Photojojo. So, she’s a plastic jurassic. Solbit is short for the four names given her by our grandchildren: Sparkle, Orangie, Lulu, Breakit. We tend to use her given names for when she’s been naughty. Thank you for visiting Tales of a Plastic Jurassic. Solbit likes company and hopes you’ll come back.
  • You can learn more about Solbit at her About page and in the earlier posts, “Solbit: How I Got My Name” and “Solbit: How I Got to Travel.”

Solbit Visits Butterflies in Zanzibar 

*New reader? Get oriented below.

Dear Nicalai,

Hi.  Papa said something odd on our way to some enviro-eco place here in Zanzibar.  “Float like a butterfly; sting like a bee.”

“What?”  I asked him. Craig, in the back of our van said, “That’s a quote from Muhammed Ali, the great American boxer.”

Nona told me, “Solbit, sometimes the mention of one thing will make you remember something else. So, when Papa heard we were going to the Zanzibar Butterfly Centre, he remembered one of his heroes, Muhammed Ali. Muhammed Ali used the word “butterfly” when he described how he boxed. ‘Float like a butterfly; sting like a bee.’ He was not only a champion boxer, but he was a champion for civil rights and for peace.”

I asked Nona, “What’s a boxer? Someone who puts things into boxes or what?”  Nona said, “Ooops, we’re here; I’ll have to tell you later.” We went right into the Butterfly Centre.  A smart, friendly man and a beautiful little girl, his neighbor, welcomed us, and taught us so much about butterflies that I’m not sure I can remember it all correctly.

Here are some pictures.  (I’m just a little plastic jurassic, so, if I make a mistake telling you what they are, please let me know. You can make a comment back to my blog, OK?)

Well, the main thing about a butterfly that got my attention is how very different it looks from its “baby” stage to its “adult” form.  It goes through several stages to get from these teeny weeny eggs

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(Hey, these don’t look anything like the eggs Papa has for breakfast, do they?) to this worm-like form, called a “caterpillar”

Butterfly Center Tour of Jozani Chwaka Bay NP and Butterfly Garden

then to this green bean looking thing called “pupa”

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and then the pupa changes into this, a “chrysalis”

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(doesn’t this one look like metal?) and then, a completely different looking insect breaks out of its chrysalis and floats up to a sitting place to dry its wings.  It’s a butterfly!

Butterfly Center Tour of Jozani Chwaka Bay NP and Butterfly Garden

Amazing!  We got to see a lot of different butterflies in a butterfly garden. The garden had flowering plants that the butterflies like, because they provide their “food,” which is something called nectar.  I guess nectar is a sweet tasting liquid.

If you come to Zanzibar, you definitely want to make a trip to the Zanzibar Butterfly Centre.  I got to be good friends with the little girl, Neema.  Mentioning “friends” reminds me of another Muhammed Ali quote that Papa told me:  “Friendship … is not something you learn in school. But if you haven’t learned the meaning of friendship, you really haven’t learned anything.”

I’m your friend.

Love,

Solbit

June 2014

  • You may be asking yourself, “Who is Solbit?” Solbit is a fictional character, but she is a real plastic dinosaur, sent to us unsolicited in a package we ordered from Photojojo. So, she’s a plastic jurassic. Solbit is short for the four names given her by our grandchildren: Sparkle, Orangie, Lulu, Breakit. We tend to use her given names for when she’s been naughty. Thank you for visiting Tales of a Plastic Jurassic. Solbit likes company and hopes you’ll come back.
  • You can learn more about Solbit at her About page and in the earlier posts, “Solbit: How I Got My Name” and “Solbit: How I Got to Travel.”

Solbit says, “DES … and You Know What That Means.”

*New reader? Get oriented below.

Dear Nicalai,

Hi. We left Australia, after 2 1/2 months, landed at DES this afternoon. You know what that means, don’t you? It means three things:

First, DES is “airport-talk” for the name of the airport where we landed.  The city of Dar es Salaam!  Here’s a picture that Nona took of me looking out from our 9th floor hotel window at the city.

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Second, Dar es Salaam is an Arabic phrase that literally means “the abode of peace.” Yeah, we’re in the place where peace abides.  We just got here, so I haven’t seen that for myself, but I sure hope that’s true.  I like peace.

(Hey, if you want to sound cool and experienced, you don’t say the whole name, Dar es Salaam. No, people just say, “I’m in Dar” or “Just got to DES.”  Papa, said that he thinks that’s “affected,” but I don’t know what that word means. Do you? Anyway, he doesn’t say “Dar.”)

Third, guess what country Dar es Salaam is in.  Give up? OK, I’ll tell you: Tanzania.  Tanzania is a country on the east coast of a huge continent called Africa.  Africa is bigger than North America, Papa says. Yeah, we’re in Africa!

Right away, Dar es Salaam introduced me to three things that I hadn’t seen before.  You’re probably thinking “Africa” and “things she hasn’t seen,” and you’re thinking lion, elephants, and hippo.  Right?  Well, you’d be wrong.  Here’s what I just saw all in one place, our hotel room:

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There’s World Cup soccer (football) games on TV, a bug zapper (that’s the cage on the floor), and a scale.

Nona, Papa, their friends Ellen, Craig, Jo, Jack, and Betsy, and just about everybody else in the hotel — hey, the whole town — were glued to the opening soccer games.  What’s so great about grown men running around like they have no arms kicking and heading a ball?  I don’t get it.

Now, that bug zapper, I get.  The little biting mosquitos go looking for light, they land on something in that cage with the blinking neon light, and zap.  They’re fried.  That sounds cruel, but Nona says it helps prevent a bad disease, malaria, from spreading.  The scale is for us to weigh our luggage, so we don’t go over the weight limit on plane rides inside Tanzania. Gosh, I sure don’t want our plane to be overloaded.  How do those planes stay up in the air, anyway?

Hey, I know I’m going on too long, but I have just one more thing that I have to show you. I met the most wonderful fella at the hotel restaurant last evening at supper.  I think he’s gorgeous.  I think he liked me too, because he kept trying to kiss me!  No luck though.  Here’s why.

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He couldn’t get through the aquarium glass.  I blew back a kiss at him, but that didn’t satisfy him.  He just kept puckering away. I could tell he wanted more.

I know I said just one more thing, but I’ve got to show you this.  We’re taking a ferry ride from Dar (don’t tell Papa I said that) to Zanzibar. It’s in Tanzania, too.  We had to leave very early in the morning.  I thought you’d like my sunrise photo at the ferry. Enjoy!

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Remember, I’m your friend.

Love,

Solbit

June 2014

  • You may be asking yourself, “Who is Solbit?” Solbit is a fictional character, but she is a real plastic dinosaur, sent to us unsolicited in a package we ordered from Photojojo. So, she’s a plastic jurassic. Solbit is short for the four names given her by our grandchildren: Sparkle, Orangie, Lulu, Breakit. We tend to use her given names for when she’s been naughty. Thank you for visiting Tales of a Plastic Jurassic. Solbit likes company and hopes you’ll come back.
  • You can learn more about Solbit at her About page and in the earlier posts, “Solbit: How I Got My Name” and “Solbit: How I Got to Travel.”

Solbit Doesn’t Have a Problem with Crabs

*New reader? Get oriented below.

Dear Nicalai,

Some people have a problem with crabs, but I don’t.  I like them.  What are crabs?  You know those little things you see on beaches and sometimes at the edges of rivers or creeks?

The ones I’m talking about are bubbler crabs.  When I first met one, I wasn’t looking for it.  Nona, Papa, and I were walking on Four Mile Beach here in Port Douglas in Far North Queensland.  Papa pointed out the little sand balls that radiated out from little holes in the sandy beach.  That’s the first thing I noticed.

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Papa picked me up.  He said, “Solbit, come up here so you can get a perspective on these little sand balls.  See the lovely patterns?”  Well, then I could see the patterns.  I guess that’s what “perspective” means, where you’re looking from, huh? I had been too close to see the patterns.  I had to get farther away to appreciate the lovely patterns of sand balls, the art.  So that was the second thing that I noticed.

Then I used Papa’s word.  It’s good to try to use a new word as soon as you learn it.  I said, “Papa, I want a closer perspective, now.  Please put me down.”  He did, and I almost fell into a hole!

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I caught myself, though.  Then, Nona said, “Solbit, be very still and quiet.  Wait and watch.  Maybe something will come up from that hole.”  So that’s what I did, and here’s the third thing that I noticed, movement. Something moved very quickly and stopped suddenly.

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That’s when this tiny crab, smaller than I am, came to the surface.  The moment it saw me, zoom, it went scurrying down the beach.

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It didn’t need to run away, because I wouldn’t hurt it or eat it.  I’m vegetarian, and I like crabs, especially these little bubbler crabs that are so artsy.  Don’t you think they make the beach look pretty with their dot “paintings?”

Biology Lesson:  Remember that I told you about the marine worms on the beach?    They make those squiggly thingies, castings, when they strip organic matter from the sand and then poop out the sand.  Well, that’s what these bubbler crab sand balls are too, poop, not from worms but from those little crabs.  Guess what? It doesn’t smell at all, either.

I’ve got to go.  Nona and Papa said we have to get packed for our trip to Tanzania tomorrow.  They said that we’re going to stop on the way in a place called Doha, Qatar.  I’m really excited, even though I don’t have a lot of things to pack, because, you know, we dinosaurs don’t have to wear clothes. Bye.

I’m your friend.

Love,

Solbit

June 2014

  • You may be asking yourself, “Who is Solbit?” Solbit is a fictional character, but she is a real plastic dinosaur, sent to us unsolicited in a package we ordered from Photojojo. So, she’s a plastic jurassic. Solbit is short for the four names given her by our grandchildren: Sparkle, Orangie, Lulu, Breakit. We tend to use her given names for when she’s been naughty. Thank you for visiting Tales of a Plastic Jurassic. Solbit likes company and hopes you’ll come back.
  • You can learn more about Solbit at her About page and in the earlier posts, “Solbit: How I Got My Name” and “Solbit: How I Got to Travel.”

Solbit, You Can’t Take It With You.

*New reader? Get oriented below.

Dear Nicalai,

10,350.  That’s my number. I found that number, and I’m keeping it. You know that saying, “Finders Keepers. Losers Weepers?”  Well, I’m the finder.  It’s mine! Look at me when I found it.

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The marker says the distance to Madagascar from Port Douglas is 10,350 kilometers.  Well, we’re not going to Madagascar, but we’re going in that direction to a place near there, Tanzania, and Nona said the distance might be about the same.

She said something else too, and that got me asking questions.  Nona said, “Solbit, no, you can’t take that number with you.”  I asked, “Why not? I found it didn’t I?”  Papa jumped in, “Leave it right there on the brass compass. You can memorize it and take your memory of it with you.”

So, I’ve been going everywhere saying, “Ten thousand, three hundred, fifty.  Ten thousand, three hundred, fifty.  Ten thousand, three hundred, fifty…”  Finally, Papa couldn’t take it any more. He said, “Oh, for Pete’s sake, Solbit, knock it off!”

I said, “But, Papa, I tried to knock it off, but Nona said I wasn’t allowed to do that. AND, you said memorize the number and take it with me.”  He looked sternly at Nona.

Papa changed the subject, “Hey, look at that cool slide.  I bet Solbit would enjoy playing on that.”  I said, “Papa, I thought you and Nona said that you don’t make bets. No gambling, right?”  Papa said, “It’s just a figure of speech, Solbit.”  Then I asked, “So, what’s a figure of speech?”  He gave Nona that look again, and she said, “Solbit, let’s get you on that slide.  OK?”  Isn’t this a cool looking slide?

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My questions aren’t getting answered, but I’m not complaining, because I am having fun.  A girl can find plenty of places to play here in Port Douglas.  Wait until you see where this slide dumps me.

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Plop! Right into this beautiful park by the sea.  Papa said, “Look, Solbit, a lot of people come here to walk and to have picnics.”  I replied, “Papa, isn’t picnic a funny word for eating food?  Where does that word come from? …”  He interrupted me, “Solbit, you have a lot of questions.  I’m glad you are curious, but, please, no more questions. Could we please dispense with the questions and just enjoy our walk in this park?”  I said, “Hey, Papa, I think you just said no more questions and then you asked a question!  Also, what’s that word, dispense, mean?”

Nona gave me a big smile, and she said, “Solbit, I think you are amazing. Come over here and see what I just found.”  I went over there and saw this.

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Nona, set me up on this post and said, “It’s a Solbit-sized maze.  You’re supposed to walk the pathway of the maze and open your mind and your heart to a leading.  Go ahead walk the maze, Solbit.”  I said, “OK, Nona, but what’s a maze? Are they related to what you just called me, amazing? How will I know whether it comes into my head or my heart?

Papa said, “Solbit, walk the maze.”  He sort of sounded like a pirate saying, “Walk the plank! Know what I mean?”  I wonder if maybe I overloaded him with questions?  Do you think I asked too many questions?

I’m your friend.

Love,

Solbit

June 2014

*You may be asking yourself, “Who is Solbit?” Solbit is a fictional character, but she is a real plastic dinosaur, sent to us unsolicited in a package we ordered from Photojojo. So, she’s a plastic jurassic. Solbit is short for the four names given her by our grandchildren: Sparkle, Orangie, Lulu, Breakit. We tend to use her given names for when she’s been naughty. Thank you for visiting Tales of a Plastic Jurassic. Solbit likes company and hopes you’ll come back.

*You can learn more about Solbit at her About page and in the earlier posts, “Solbit: How I Got My Name” and “Solbit: How I Got to Travel.”